My Day by Eleanor Roosevelt

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NEW YORK, Monday—I haven't talked to you this year about the riot of purple color which always rejoices my soul every summer as it blooms around our pond and is reflected in the water. We call this weed, loosestrife, and it is lovelier in the mass like this than anything one could plant.

My friend, Miss Cook, who has great taste with flowers, has planted masses of red and white phlox, which reflect in the water around her pond, a bit of water which is far clearer than the water we see from our porch.

Every time I walk by the spot it seems to me a breathtaking bit of beauty, but not as beautiful as the riot and abundance of our purple weed. It is not quite as brilliant this year. I thought at first it had not come to full bloom, but I begin to think that for some reason or other it is not going to be quite as solid a mass of color as usual.

Four of us ate our supper on the porch last night and watched the sun go down in a brilliant red ball of fire, and turn the sky into a deep red and pale pink, which reflected itself in the water. For some unknown reason, the beauties of nature always seem to remind me of the Psalms, probably because David also lived close to nature and all his life used similes from nature to express his ideas.

When I was in the West and looked out on the high mountains every morning, the phrase, "I will lift up mine eyes unto the hills" would invariably come to my mind. Here, with rolling country and herds of cattle and pastures all about, the Twenty-Third Psalm seems to fit the countryside, only if I were to "lie down in green pastures" I would soon be eaten up by mosquitoes. Why must such pests intrude on one's most poetic moods?

We sat out in the sun and talked several hours on end. The people with us were young. They could look into the future and dream and hope to see the dream really come true within the span of their own lives. Prosaic things like new industries, expanded peacetime production, better relations and cooperation between management and labor, translated themselves into new and wonderful living for people whose lives have been drab in the past.

It is a curious thing. I wonder if you ever reflect on it. One can buy the kind of knowledge that sufficient education produces. It is not hard to find men who have been trained to do technician's jobs, or men with the type of minds which make it possible to do precise work of scientific research; but education never gives imagination or the type of freedom of mind which makes one an inventor of any kind. These people are not easy to find. These are the pioneers of the world of the future.

E.R.
TMs, AERP, FDRL